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tv   Prime News  HLN  August 13, 2009 6:38pm-7:00pm EDT

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welcome back to "prime news" on hln. continuing our conversation. just this morning a man accused of stealing a track starts a high-speed chase with police. and we have the video of the tragic ending. that pickup truck ends up being hit by another vehicle. actually had a green light. kind of ironic there. hit the pole after impact with that other vehicle. the driver, the person who
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allegedly stole the truck, instantly dead. a couple other minor injuries. how was it handled? we've got our experts standing by. we'll take your calls. 1-877-tell-hln is the number. jennifer smetters joins us. jennifer, as you look at this, i've got to agree with lou. it sounds like police did the job. do you agree or disagree? >> i have to disagree, mike. the police are there to serve and protect its citizens. and to have a man, regardless if he stole the vehicle or not, lose his life is a tragic situation. that man's life was worth more than the value of this vehicle. the police inflamed the situation to an extent. now, this may have been not -- it may have been a low-travelled road. but even more so, even on a street like that, people's guard normally comes down. this man is speeding along. the media was surveying him from above. let's look at the protocol that the police used.
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>> but they called off the chase. they were just monitoring. we can see right here they're not hot in pursuit of this guy. >> but a hot pursuit -- nonetheless, this man saw that he was being followed by police. he was scared. he probably -- we're assuming he broke the law. if he did, his pulse is racing. he's scared he's going to get caught. he did a stupid thing by stealing this car if in fact he did. and the excitement of the situation -- >> let's get lou back in and talk about that protocol. i mean, you steal a truck, you're going to be on edge, right, lou? >> yeah. obviously. and you're probably anticipating being chased. and the simple truth of this matter is whoever this individual was precipitated his own death. the police exercised what i would consider to be proper discretion. you have to take into account that someone made an illegal left-hand turn and probably could be sued for wrongful death even though this individual stole the truck. that's just the law. to feel that the police were complicit in any way with this
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unfortunate death of this individual is just not true. >> what about that, jennifer? lou's throwing out that the person who hit the guy driving the stolen truck could be more liable than the cops. >> oh, i find that ridiculous. very preposterous. road. judging the speed bottom line. to say they precipitated his death, that's ridiculous. >> we've got a disagreement. he stole the truck. he precipitated this whole event. lou, last word really quick. >> any way that you want to slice, this the simple fact of the matter is regardless of the impetus to the accident the individual who stole the truck had the right of way, period, plain and simple. and whoever made the turn made an illegal turn. i do not believe that the accident was really precipitated by anything that the police did. >> okay. >> and the tape stands on its own merit. >> we've got it leave it there.
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good debate there. jennifer, lou, we appreciate it. coming up, we'll update you on the rick pitino sex scandal. we heard him right here on this program giving his apology for his indiscretion, as he put it, having sex with a woman on a table at a restaurant. the school's standing by him. what do you think? what should happen? should he get punished in any way? should he resign, get fired? call in. 1-877-tell-hln.
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all right. what do you think the university of louisville should do about the whole rick pitino sex scandal? marquee basketball coach, admitted to boozing it up, having sex with a woman at a restaurant. she gets preg navrnt. coach pitino gave her three grand. she ends up having an abortion. the coach apologized. yesterday we had it live for you. to just about everybody. >> if you tell the truth, your
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problem becomes part of your past. if you lie, it becomes part of your future. and i made a very difficult decision to tell the truth to the federal authorities, the local authorities, to university officia officials, and most important, the people that love me the most, my family and friends. >> all right. let's lay out everything for you here. this happened six years ago. came to light when karen sypher was charged with trying to extort up to $10 million from pitino. after those charges she claimed she was raped. now, authorities are not pursuing rape charges. coach? they're sticking by him. head of the athletic department says, here's his quote, "a million percent behind rick pitino." all right. one of the main questions and talking points coming out of this, what kind of message does that send? a player would probably get kicked off a team ever a scandal like this. but the coach? the role model, father figure,
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the guy who should be held to a higher standard. he stays? what do you i? call in. the number 1-877-tell-hln. joining us to talk about it, brian socolow, a sports attorney. also with us, back with us, kent taylor, reporter "prime news" affiliate wave. and joining me again on the phone, colleague, friend stephen a. smith, journalist, former anchor, reporter, analyst, espn and again my colleague at cnn si. great to have everybody back. kent, let me start with you. oar a reporter there in louisville. is there talk of any kind of punishment at all for the coach or are they just moving forward? >> it dpunts sound like it at this point. as you said, tom jurich, the athletic director, vice president of athletics, he said he's a million percent behind him. we talked with the president of the university dr. james ramsey today. he seems to be behind coach pitino. we'll see. unless something else comes out, which is entirely possible at this point, i mean, it's been crazy for the last four months. so as long as we have all the facts right now, it sounds like nothing else will happen to coach pitino, that he will not be suspended, window take a leave of absence, and will be back on the bench next season. >> real quick, ken, the
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president of the school, james ramsey, knew about this, but some details surprised him. what are those details that surprised him? as this fully came to light. >> he has not said specifically -- we can assume, i guess, the abortion thing was probably something that maybe he hadn't heard. we can only assume that maybe that. that's the only thing that kind of was shocking -- had a shock factor around here and all over the country yesterday. maybe that was it. but he hasn't really said much on the matter. >> got you. stephen a. joining us again. is this just about money and wins? we did a little research. laying it out there. louisville basketball the most profitable in the country. the value of the basketball program, 24.4 million. when pitino showed up. i think they were 12-19 the year before. they've won 70% of their games since. he gets a pass because they win? is that what we've got here? >> well, it's all about the benjamins. the bottom line, it's about getting paid. the money that he brings to that program, the attention and prestige and cachet he brings to the program, the all-americans he's able to recruit because he
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is rick pitino. being a national championship coach at kentucky, taking providence to the final four, taking louisville as far as he's done, all of those things factor into the equation. but i don't think you can also minimize or diminish the impact of the woman alleging these allegations, or throwing these allegations out there. because the fact is there's been so many holes in the story, what it comes down to in the eyes of these administrators is do we sit there and disrupt our program because the coach committed infidelity against his wife? no. you do not. if he indeed raped her, which he's swearing did not happen, you get rid of him for those things. you might even consider it because of the abortion claim. but because he committed infidelity, or adultery, rather, with his wife, i guarantee you that is not enough of a reason to get rid of your head basketball coach that generates millions for your program. >> let's bring in brian socolow on this. we've got some calls. again, 1-877-tell-hln is the number. want to hear from you. what do you think should happen to the coach here?
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brian, do you agree? is it about money? i mean, what -- i mean, rick pitino is supposed to be the pi pi pillar of the community, the face of the school. how can you be proud when the pillar of the community -- let's face it, that table at that restaurant is going to be a tourist stop now. they've got to be proud of that, huh? >> i think you're right. and what remains to be seen is reaction as this plays out and is he going to continue to have the support and is he going to continue to attract the recruits and make the money for the program. if he doesn't, then you look at what his contract says and his contract clearly says that the university can terminate him if he engages in some sort of disrepute or is dishonest to the that he engaged in an extra marital to that
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discussions with the university, that's very serious and you're absolutely right. are they willing to tolerate that? >> the contract they wanted, if they want him, they have grounds to fire him. let's get a call in real quick. shannon, west virginia, what are you thinking? what should happen? shannon? >> oh, hello. i actually have two comments. first of all, i don't think he should be fired because he made a mistake, he committed adultry, but if you take every man and woman out in america that commit adultery and fire for them for that. ask you a lot of people in the unemployment line. i have to disagree with you about it being a bad role modal for the students. i think it's a good thing because the students are going to look at him and see that, yeah, he made a mistake, but he went on national tv, he admitted the fact that he made a mistake and the university is sticking behind him versus some of these sports bars that are going out and saying they never did
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anything -- >> we want to hear from you 1-877-tell-hln is the number.
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